Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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One-Liner Wednesday: Has Gratitude Ever Kept You Awake at Night?

“Has gratitude ever kept you awake at night?”

Reverend Patti Mary asked this question in her sermon on Sunday. I thought she was quoting Curtis Almquist since she had referred to his book The Twelve Days of Christmas, Unwrapping the Gifts. The question, “Has gratitude ever kept you awake at night?” was not in his chapter on gratitude, so maybe it was from Almquist, or maybe it was from Patti Mary.

My answer is, gratitude has not kept me awake for long, so I need to count my blessings when worries and questions are doing summersaults in my heat at 2AM.

What I did find in the chapter on gratitude, was Almquist quoting Rilke:

“I would like to beg you to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to live the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms of books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live therm. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.” (Rainer Maria Rilke)

Oh, I’ve noticed it living into the answer, I just need to remember to trust the timing.

Live the questions, but don’t let them keep you awake at night.

One Liner Wednesday is hosted by Linda Hill who is a blessing. For more one-liners visit Linda’s post here.


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SoCS: Gratitude and Angel Art

Our Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “close eyes and point.” Grab the closest printed material to you when you sit down to write your post, open it up (if it’s a book, flyer, etc.), close your eyes, and point. Whatever your finger lands on, use that as your prompt. Have fun!

Thanks Linda!

It’s Friday morning, earlier than I usually write my post for SoCSaturday. I’ve got a busy day getting ready for tomorrow’s artisan fair at my church. It’s a big deal to me. The forecast is for a lot of rain, but it’s an indoor event, so I hope they don’t cancel it. This afternoon will be clear skies, or at least not much chance for rain, so that will be good for the set up. I’ll share some more later about that if the stream takes me there.

So, sitting at the table which doubles as my desk, there is a pile of papers to my left. The one on top is a green piece of scrap paper that I’ve written notes on from one of my organizations – Northside Food Co-op. I live near the northside of town which is part of a large food desert that includes my neighborhood. We’re starting with a Saturday farmers market and the plan is to have an affordable grocery store in the area. I signed up to be on the community engagement committee. (This was after telling myself not to sign up for anything new.) Anyway, there was a zoom meeting and a guest who is a former resident of the northside. The young African American woman talked to the committee about growing up without regular access to food, the poverty of not knowing, watching her mother struggle, and some personal trauma that she experienced. I asked her what helped her get through these things, and she said she just did – she got through it. She shared a spiritual awakening as an adult that has given her enthusiasm to go back and help those in the old neighborhood.

I didn’t point with my eyes closed, because when I looked at the green piece of scrap paper trying to decipher my notes, I was pulled to the word, “gratitude” in the middle of the paper. The young woman who grew up on the northside said,

“I have a purpose. Gratitude is a big fire inside.”

That would make a nice one-liner for Wednesday. But here it is in the stream. A big fire inside makes me think of heartburn, so I don’t normally think that way. But for some people, a fire inside is a motivator for enthusiasm, a warm glow that gets things going. I could use some of that. I’m pretty busy right now, but I need more exercise as I get older. There is a tendency to want to be a couch potato which is okay sometimes. Good thing I have all these ideas that get me off the couch and nice weather of the autumnal kind to get me walking outside.

This morning David texted me that he has known me for 50 years. The party where we met in 1971 was on November 6th. That was so cool that he remembered, even if he remembered it a day early. He is the farthest thing from a couch potato. It’s interesting how partners compliment each other. I’m a night owl and he’s a morning person…….

I am filled with gratitude that God brought David back to me when the time was perfect. I’m also grateful that I have the flexibility in retirement to be busy, when ignited by the fire inside, or to sit on the couch and watch the Lord of the Rings or whatever I want to watch.

Here’s my favorite recent piece I’m taking to the artisan fair Saturday. I believe I already have a buyer!

“Blessing the Whales” ~ Acrylic on Wood Panel

Here are some other projects I’ve been working on for the artisan fair. David drilled holes in the mimosa cookies so they can be ornaments. We had to cut the mimosa way back when we had the roof redone. It grew back well.

~~~

For more streams of consciousness, rules, etc. visit our host Linda Hill by clicking here.


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One-Liner Wednesday: It Still Might Happen.

“Just because it didn’t happen then, doesn’t mean it will never happen.”

Monyay Paskalides

This goes with my “Trust the Timing” book title. Let’s apply it to good dreams coming true, answered prayers, and things working out for the best.

~~~

One-Liner Wednesday is hosted by Linda Hill every single Wednesday. For more one liners and guidelines, click here.


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SoCS: Hope for the Best and Trust the Timing

Linda picked my favorite word for today’s prompt: HOPE!

If you can’t find faith, look for hope. Hope will lead you to faith.

About 15 years ago, I was afraid to hope. Romance was not working out for me at all, so I tried not to want a partner. I tried to become cynical about men. I decided to focus on myself and my daughter, friendship, and of course my most loyal companions, the dogs.

But hope snuck back in. I read about manifesting, and visualizing. Of course, this was AFTER I had worked on myself some. For five years, I hadn’t dated anyone beyond a coffee shop visit. No one interesting seemed interested in me. Now, I know that was all part of the plan created by God, the Universe, my guardian angels who were tired of my dating messes and lessons. They all knew I had work to do on me first.

At the same time I was working on me, licking my wounds, and finding my footing again, my high school sweetheart and long lost first love was doing the same – working on himself. We were becoming ready.

Have you seen my wild woman photo? It was taken around that time when I was working on me. My daughter and I had gone on a trip to the mountains. I love this photo.

It was comfortably dark in the forest, and I’m resisting the urge to edit this photo.

I see that I posted it back in 2013. Well, here it is again. I thought I was lonely, but I was finding myself. My authentic self. I’m guessing this was taken around 2006, but that’s just a guess.

Well, here we are in 2021. David and I are coming up on the ten year anniversary of our second first date which was July 15, 2011. We were so nervous and excited. He says he wasn’t looking for a relationship. I told my heart to calm down! But we both knew this was extra special. In October, the company he had worked for in Connecticut for 35 years told him it was time to retire. That spring he moved in with his 3 dogs to make our five pack. In December of 2012, we made it official. I know you’ve seen that photo before. But maybe the five pack one not as often.

David and I walking the five pack.

The five pack is gone now. They’ve all crossed over the rainbow bridge in the past ten years. I miss them and hope to see them in heaven. That’s more than a hope. Do I have faith that I’ll see my dogs in heaven? Yes. God knows how important this is to me.

Hope for the best. Prepare for the worst if it’s likely to happen, but don’t spend a lot of time on that. It’s like with tropical storms and hurricanes. We knew Elsa would not do as much damage as a big hurricane, so we didn’t spend much time preparing. Just a little.

We can strengthen ourselves for the difficult times as we hope for the best. Like my favorite quote goes:

I hope you are well and at peace as much as you can be. Enjoy the hopes that come your way. Nurture them and they will become exactly what they are meant to be when the time is right.

For more streams of hope, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS July 10, 2021 | (lindaghill.com)


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Ten Years Ago (A Message From My Long Lost Love)

Greetings to you! After many years, I hope you are well. Take care and be safe!

That was the Facebook message I read on June 14, 2011. The last time I’d seen David was on the last day of school in 1972 when he kissed me goodbye and moved 700 miles away. I’d written him four letters. He’s written back twice and did not answer my last letter that summer. Life went on.

On June 14, 2011, I answered David’s FB message as I tried so slow my hopeful heart:

Wow! I knew it was really you when I saw Jethro Tull in your favorite music. What sweet memories. I am well, for 55 anyway. My profile picture is from the reunion we had in Sept with Sally, Terry and Caroline, after many years of no contact. It’s so nice to get your message. Hope you are well and safe too!

My profile picture back then looked like

His profile picture was an airport runway.

So I pictured him from my tenth grade yearbook:

David 1972. I did remember him!

People can change a lot in 39 years. I wondered what he looked like. He tells me now he was very busy in June of 2011. Maybe that’s why he took six whole days to message me back with:

“Would you mind if I called you sometime? I would really like hear from you. A lot of catching up!”

Want to read more about our true love story? Want to know what happened in those 39 years and what it took for us to be ready to find love again? Trust the Timing, a Memoir of Finding Love Again is written from both our perspectives. Find it HERE on my Amazon author page.

This is us in 1972


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One-Liner Wednesday: On Being Late

Sometimes being late is right on time.

Sometimes late is late. I have to admit that up front, because I tend to run late. I stay up late. I like to sleep late. I was a late bloomer. Often I’ll get to a WP neighbor’s blog post late, but it seems to be right when I needed to read it. I was generally on time for work – thank God I don’t have that obligation anymore. I’m on time for doctor appointments which I try to schedule in the afternoon. I’m on time for church since my husband is a morning person and my awareness that he likes to be early nudges me along.

We were both in our 50s when the love of my life found me again. That seems late in life, but it was right on time. I had promised myself I’d stop looking for a partner until after my daughter graduated from high school. The day after her graduation ceremony is when my high school sweetheart found me again. It took 39 years of learning and growth for us to be ready to meet again. (Click my book cover on the sidebar if you want to learn more.)

I’m planning to share the FB message David sent me on Sunday or Monday. He says he sent it on Sunday June 13, 2011. FB says June 14. I’ll probably go with David. He’s always on time.

For more one liners please visit our host, Linda Hill at One-Liner Wednesday – Late to the party | (lindaghill.com)


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JusJoJan: The Spell was in His Smell

1972

JoAnna’s brain kept nagging her. Be careful! People are on their best behavior when you first meet them.

But this isn’t the first time we’ve met him, said her heart.

A lot can change in 39 years. Yeah, he was a good guy when you dated in high school, but who knows what he might really be like now. For all we know, he could be a —-

“Don’t go there,” JoAnna intervened before her brain’s imagination ran down the dark road. “Let’s just wait and see. What we do know is that he has been working as a firefighter and EMT for the past 15 years. That should at least count for something. I’m taking it slow.”

I’ve heard that before, said her brain.

Shush! said her heart. Last night was wonderful. He was a perfect gentleman. Our second first date…. And that kiss….. our second first kiss…. it was divine. This was meant to be. You know, there’s the timing. And we’ve had all those phone conversations. He drove all the way down here from Connecticut!

Well, just remember, JoAnna, said her brain, “Follow your heart, but take your brain with you.” The brain really should be in charge anyway. You know how much trouble the heart has gotten you in to. Not to mention the body….

“Enough!” JoAnna said. “I’ve got to get some sleep! Big day tomorrow.”

On their second second date, David and JoAnna went to the beach to watch the summer sunset. She leaned back against his strong chest and felt the comfortable security of his well-muscled arms wrapped around her. She kept both her heart and brain quiet as they watched the golden light spread across the horizon and reflect on the intracoastal waterway. David continued to be a perfect gentleman which the brain and heart both liked, though the body was slightly annoyed.

Sunday was their last day together before David returned to Connecticut. After church, they sat on the couch in JoAnna’s living room. They talked very little and mostly absorbed the weekend and each other’s presence. JoAnna placed her head on his shoulder then lifted her nose to his neck. She inhaled deeply. The result was intoxicating.

“You smell good,” She murmured. “Are you wearing any cologne or anything?”

“No. I guess it’s just me.”

She lifted his hand and smelled the inside of his wrist. It smelled good, too, but not as good as his neck. Her nose lingered just below his ear as she continued to breath deeply falling under the spell of his pheromones. It started to dawn on her. He had been her first boyfriend back in 1972. His smell had been imprinted on her brain.

This could be dangerous, whispered her brain.

Just shut up and enjoy it, her heart said dreamily.

We have to stick together, said her brain. Don’t go anywhere without me.

Yeah, whatever.

___

If you’d like to read more about the romance of JoAnna and David and what it took for them to find each other after 39 years, read Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again, or the short version, From Loneliness to Love. Just click on the books in the right sidebar above.

Today’s Just Jot January prompt was the word, “spell.” For more jottings and info, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

#JusJoJan prompt the 21st – “Spell” | (lindaghill.com)


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A Letter to My Past Self About Reasons to Keep Living

This post is inspired by Eliza at: https://elizajourneythroughlife.home.blog/

I’m sending this back in time to myself whenever it’s needed most, sometime in my late teens or early twenties when I had thoughts about suicide. 

Dear JoAnne, 

It’s me, your future self, writing this to you when I am 65 years old which doesn’t feel as old as I thought it would back then when I was 20. Believe me, there is plenty of life to live. 

I know this is hard time for you. I know you are confused and lost trying to figure out what to do with your life. I know your heart aches and that you’ve had thoughts of giving up. Don’t give up!  It’s very important that you know life will get better. There will be hard times ahead. There will be times when you feel your heart is breaking, but the good times will vastly, surely, and greatly outweigh the bad. When I look back at all the good times over the past 45 years, I am so grateful that I didn’t give up.

You will gradually gain the skills to navigate and overcome the hard times. Things that seem impossible now, will someday be easier or less important. 

There are good times, wonderful times, ahead with the constants in your life: nature, art, writing, dogs, horses, cats, learning, and spirituality. These are the things you need to focus on now – the true loves of your life that always nurture your spirit and feed your soul. There will be love. Love from men, friends, and family. Your parents love you very much, even more than you can realize right now since you haven’t had children, yet, but you will. The love of family and friends is important. For now, don’t worry about the men, especially the ones who act like boys. You deserve love that is kind and caring, mature and strong. It might take a while, but you will have it. For now focus on loving yourself. 

You are valuable! You are worth so much more than you know. You have so much to give to this world with all your gifts, gifts that are still being developed. 

I know you might not want to hear this right now, but God loves you deeply, profoundly and forever. Just trust me on this. Your family is praying for you every day. Let this knowledge strengthen you. I know your ideas about religion are eclectic and nontraditional, and that’s okay. That’s part of who you are. But understand that there is a Higher Power who loves you dearly and has a wonderful plan for you! Trust the timing.

So, forget about men for now.  Remember your dreams. Your dreams may change, but they will always be about helping others and Mother Earth. For now, focus on loving yourself and learning. Cut down on the drinking. Be safe. Go back to college. Feel free to explore different classes, different interests.

There’s a whole world of possibilities waiting for you!

I’m sending big hugs and abundant love across time to you. Be still for a moment and feel it. Then move forward with you wonderful life. I promise your life will be will be interesting, beautiful and full of wonder.  

I love you always, 

JoAnna

Today’s Just Jot January topic was, “Letter.” I’m thankful to E for her nudge and patience on this letter and to Linda, our JusJoJan host for getting me to go through my draft ideas to get it written.

For more on Just Jot January, visit: #JusJoJan prompt the 11th – “Letter” | (lindaghill.com)


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One-Liner Wednesday on Relationships

 

“The good news is that we can learn something from every relationship.”

From Loneliness to Love

 

It was nine years ago on July 15, that I had my second first date with my high school sweetheart. We had not seen each other in 39 years. It took us that long to learn the lessons we needed to learn, to become ready to meet again. The challenges of the past prepared us for the road we walk now. The heartbreaks of yesterday deepen the joys of today. 

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One-liner Wednesday is brought to us by Linda G. Hill. For more one-liners, visit:

One-Liner Wednesday, July 15th – It’s 5 o’clock somewhere


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Desire and Divine Intervention

Here’s something different for a Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt:  The word is, “want.” Make the word “want” the first, second, or third word of your post. Have fun!

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I didn’t want to want a man in my life. 

The divorce had strangled my heart – figuratively, and acid reflux made me think I was having a heart attack. The rebound from hell should have made me swear off romantic relationships. Rebound number 2 was better, but still stressful. I couldn’t relax with him, even after three years. Men were too much stress. The little bit of romance and security was not worth the headaches and stomach aches.

So I asked God to take away the desire for a partner. Then, as an afterthought, I said, “or send me a good one.”

And eventually, when the time was right, God did just that. (God didn’t take away the desire, though I relaxed a bit just turning it over.) God sent me a good one.  Not perfect, but maybe perfect for me – allowing me to work on my issues and him to work on his issues, and the little bit of (normal) stress is totally worth the abundance of security and compatibility.

The long version is my memoir, Trust the Timing. But I’m also working on a short version, called From Loneliness to Love, Five Steps for Finding a Healthy Relationship.  It’s almost ready for publication. Just when I think I’ve got it all lined up, there’s a formatting issue that pops up between the uploading and the proofing. I guess I need to keep plugging away and trust the timing.

I want it to all fall into place, which happens occasionally, though not as often as I want. A friend of mine told me, “If it don’t fit, don’t force it.” If you want something really bad and it’s not happening, don’t force it.  Don’t give up, but try something a little different, take a break, take up a hobby. If it’s meant to happen, it will.

When David was 15 and moved far away,  the lady I babysat for told me, “If you are meant to be together, you will be.”  It stopped my tears and gave me hope. Life went on and on. David became a sweet but distant memory.  Then, 39 years after we said goodbye in 1972, he found me again. Now he is my life partner. The good one. Not forced, but falling into place.

We are all waiting to see what will happen in the world and in our lives. But we are not alone and never were.

Don’t force it. Trust the timing.

I’m still learning that one.

This is for all the lonely people.

For more Streams of Consciousness, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

https://lindaghill.com/2020/05/15/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-may-16-2020/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!